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locking differential?

Discussion in 'Residential Snow Removal' started by jalbertini, Sep 11, 2007.

  1. jalbertini

    jalbertini Junior Member
    from maine
    Messages: 1

    Hi all,

    Just wondering if these provide benefit or detriment for snow plowing?

  2. gene gls

    gene gls PlowSite.com Veteran
    Messages: 481

    It gives you an extra tire pushing. Also makes you slide sideways. I perfer a locker. Got one in my Mitsi.
  3. stroker79

    stroker79 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,802

    if you only have 2WD id say it will be very helpful but ive never needed on in my truck with 4WD
  4. creativedesigns

    creativedesigns PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,929

    for trucks with 4x4, as soon as you start pushing snow, when one rear wheel spins 3 cycles it automatically locks the diff so that both rear wheels have power at the same time. The same applies for the front drive system. Always plow with 4x4!!!
  5. bribrius

    bribrius PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,609

    uhhh.. no.
  6. sweetk30

    sweetk30 PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,588

    the short story of it.

    full lockers are good for all out traction. but will let you slide sideways much faster than open diff.

    clutch posi / limited slips are better in my opinion. as thay give and take a lot more so it wount push you all over as easy.

    if gm truck with gov loc traction unit then i love mine in my 14 bolt full float 1 ton rear axle. as its the best one out of all of the gm offered gov loc units. but with these you have to know how to use it and it will last. if not then thay do like to blowup in the smaller axles.

    thay are a open diff till 1 wheel spins and the fly weight locks in the clutch pack to make it a full posi unit.

    open diff is the most comon and everyone uses them with no real problems.

    so if you are doing full plow man dutys and will be in the truck all day then get some hard core stuff . if not then live with what ya got and put the money in other parts like tire chains or studded tires or green diamond tires. ....

    and a locked up axle or axles will make the vehicle handle vary diffrent in snow. so be carfull its a bit tricky getting use to it.

    thats my opinion take it as you wish.
  7. creativedesigns

    creativedesigns PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,929

    Well, the trucks in Canada do!!! HAAAAAA!!! Fords differentials must be built better in Canada then!
    Last edited: Oct 11, 2007
  8. Philbilly2

    Philbilly2 PlowSite Veteran
    Messages: 3,770

    2wd is possible with weight is what I believe he is saying. If you have weight in your truck, you don't have to use 2wd.
  9. theplowmeister

    theplowmeister 2000 Club Member
    from MA
    Messages: 2,617

    Their are only about 8 different styles of lockers out there. And they all work different. to say Ford lockers, don't mean much, it depends what brand and type of locker ford put in.
  10. B&B

    B&B PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 12,777

    Not only that, Ford light duty trucks don't even come with lockers, they're limited slips, not lockers. Two completely different things..
  11. linckeil

    linckeil PlowSite.com Addict
    from CT
    Messages: 1,272

    i had the stock ford limited slip unit in my ford 10.25" rear axle. but a limited slip/posi will fail you when you really need it. get one rear tire on ice and one on pavement and all power will be put to the tire on the ice and you will not go anywhere. the limited slip/posi will behave just like an open differential when you need it most, which will just contribute to faster clutch wear in the limited slip, thus decreasing its efficiency even more so.

    a locker will do just that, lock both rear wheels together. the one tire on ice on the one tire on pavement will get an equal amount of torque and you will drive out of it. i upgraded to a locker in my ford 10.25" rear from the limited slip and noticed a gain in traction. just stay out of the gas on wet roads as a fish tale is much more likely with a locker. and when plowing, always do it in 4wd as mentioned to help prevent a fish tale while plowing in the event you hit the gas a bit too hard.

    but study up on the subject. most lockers require the ring and pinion to be reset - or at least the ring. if you have a stock open differential, a lock right (locker brand) can be installed in the open case which would not require adjusting the ring and pinion. there's a lot to know about axles. study up before making a decision. don't spend the money and then find out the hard way!
  12. B&B

    B&B PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 12,777

    Well put....BTW, if anybody's inetested in a Lock right brand locker, they're now owned by Richmond Gear if your doing any research on them..
  13. rocknrollrednec

    rocknrollrednec Senior Member
    Messages: 108

    The roads I plow are all dirt, with steep inclines up on a mountain. even with all 4 tire chains on I was still getting stuck too many times in my 87 Dodge w250.
    so maybe 3 years ago? , I got out the 220 Arc welder and some 6011 rods and welded the spider gears together in the rear diff. that made a HUGE difference in what I could go through. (now I get further away from the house before I get stuck:D )
    but for a truck that sees street duty, I wouldn't recommend a full locker like that.
    The truck now hates dry pavement... and it's down right spooky driving in town on slick roads. the rear is always sliding around, unless I'm going absolutely straight.

    but you're asking whether YOU need a locker/posi.
    do you get stuck a lot?
  14. linckeil

    linckeil PlowSite.com Addict
    from CT
    Messages: 1,272

    your locker is what is known as a "lincoln locker". it is named after the the lincoln welder commonly used to weld the spider gears of an open differenetial together, thus effectively creating a spool. a spool is used by drag racers and by off roaders whose rigs never see pavement. a spool is acceptable only on pavement in a straightline, or in offroad conditions (read muddy,slipperly,wet,etc). the difference between a spool and a locker is that a locker allows you to make a turn on hard, dry surfaces. a spool does not. a spool is a much simplier and cheaper device than a locker. welding the spiders of an open differential and creating a "lincoln locker" has been used by some with success, but usually creates more problems than its worth. when the welds fail (and they usually will at some point), you have total destruction of your carrier and gears. maybe even the axle shafts and the axle housing itself can be destroyed. if you insist on having the wheels permanetly locked together with no intentions of making turns on dry surfaces, then i would highly recommend buying a spool. a spool has no welds to fail.
  15. rocknrollrednec

    rocknrollrednec Senior Member
    Messages: 108

    uh huh, uh huh...

    but a spool also costs more, and requires the gears be re-set up.
    in the time since I've welded 'em, I busted a (open) Dana 44 front axle stub, a NP435 mainshaft, and grenaded a NV 208 transfer case. but the Dana60 out back is still together.
    I don't recommend a lincoln locker or a spool for anything that sees street duty. my truck is dedicated to "yard work", and has chains on it from October till April, so it's not an issue for me.
    I was just givin my opinion that having the added traction does come in awfully handy.
    for added traction and street duty, I'd get a "lunch box" style of locker, which just replaces the carrier assembly.
    I'd stay away from any type that uses clutch packs, because they don't allow 100% lock, and they wear out pretty quick.
  16. linckeil

    linckeil PlowSite.com Addict
    from CT
    Messages: 1,272

    a lot of people have good success with the "lincoln locker". there's no doubt that welding up the spiders is cheaper than buying and setting up a spool, but in the event the "lincoln locker" does fail, you can count on destroyed gears, bearings, races, seals, carrier, possibly axle shafts, etc, etc. and if it does fail, you'd be wishing you had gone with a spool in the first place - that is if you would plan to keep the truck after a failure because an entire new axle would likely be the only alternative. but it sounds like you've done a good job welding it up if nothing's broke on you so far.

    and to clarify, a "lunchbox" style locker doesn't replace the carrier, it is inserted into an open (open, not limited slip) carrier and replaces the spiders with a locking device.

    but i've gotton off topic a bit here..... the initial question was will a rear locker help with snowplowing? and the consensus seems to be yes it will - its just a matter of selecting the type of locker that will best suit your needs.

    good discussion!
  17. PLOWMAN45

    PLOWMAN45 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,951

    I have a limted slip diff with a 4.10 gears works good for me